Turkey Financial Services

Chapter | Banking from The Report: Turkey 2015

Turkey’s banking sector has proved resilient in the face of both the global economic crisis and more recent fluctuations in the economy. Loan growth remains fairly high by developed-market standards but has fallen in recent years, reflecting the market’s increasing maturity as well as regulatory moves to contain credit expansion with an eye on risk profiles. In the medium to long term, the...

Despite some recent turbulence, Turkey has strong fundamentals that underscore its potential for long-term economic growth. With a young population of 77.7m, a strategic location within four hours’ flying time of 1.5bn consumers and a diversified economy, the country has much to offer investors. 

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Earlier this month Saudi Arabia’s Riyad Bank closed a $750m “sustainability” sukuk (Islamic bond), the latest in a wave of high-profile issuance across different regions. ESG-related sukuk are set to see rapid growth in 2022, even as the broader sukuk market softens.

With double-digit increases in profits and assets reported mid-year, Turkey’s banking sector remains relatively unscathed amidst ongoing political uncertainty, renewed security threats and a slowing economy. However, as borrowing costs rise, ratings agency Standard & Poor’s (S&P) predicts a cooling in the country’s banking climate. 


How did recent changes in the global macroeconomic landscape affect Turkish banks?

International ratings agencies keep a close eye on Turkey’s banking sector, given its size and importance, and the penetration of major foreign investors. Ratings movements can affect the borrowing costs of Turkish financial institutions and, at a time when Turkish banks have taken on substantial foreign debt, can be a gauge of the borrowing costs they are likely to bear.


How will tapering of the US Federal Reserve’s quantitative easing programme affect Turkey’s economy? What is being done to prepare for this?

The foreign presence in the Turkish banking market is currently undergoing a shake up, with new entrants arriving looking to expand their presence in a large and dynamic emerging market, while others are looking to pull out due to external pressures.

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